Yesterday was my grandmother's funeral, she was a catholic so the whole thing was organized in a catholic church. And although I should've been serious and sad and stuff (since my grandma had just died), I was first annoyed and then somewhat amused by what the priest said. Several times, he mentioned that the funeral was just a temporary goodbye, since 'we were all going to meet Bernice again in heaven'. Also, according to the priest, my grandma was at that very moment catching up with family and friends who were already there.

Back home, I discussed this issue with my mom and sister, and apparently they both believe in an afterlife.


In the church, there were about 250 people, all bowing their heads and agreeing with the priest. I really had a hard time restraining myself from getting up and asking him where he had found the proof that there is an afterlife, a heaven. It kind of shocked me that me and my brother were the only ones in the whole church that weren't praying along. Apparently nobody else thought they had to be skeptical about what was said...

Views: 32

Comment by Gaytor on December 31, 2010 at 11:42am

I'd ask where in the Bible it says that anyone goes to heaven before Jesus comes back. Who is Jesus going to raise up if everyone is in heaven? Is he coming back for Armageddon just to be a dick to the non-believers? Christians can't seem to accept their own religion.

1 Thessalonians 4:16 “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first”




John 5:28 Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice



Comment by Thew on December 31, 2010 at 1:00pm
I'm sorry to hear about your grandmother... But, one of the main positives that comes with atheism is the acceptance of things we can't control. No-one to blame. No-one to beg for help. Just life at its finest. You should be proud of your strength and understanding! I'm still lucky enough to have my grandparents, but I still don't think I could bow my head - even in a church, even in front of family, even in a situation that painful. On the other hand, sometimes I do catch myself thinking "at least it makes them feel better" when I see people I care for praying...
Comment by Joli on December 31, 2010 at 1:23pm
My condolences to you and your family. I agree with Thew. You should be very proud :)  I have thought about how it will effect me when my grandmother dies. She has been like a parent to me when my mom couldn't be. She gave me away in my wedding. She is 91 years old and still going strong. But I fear that day because i don't know how to cope with death as an atheist. I've not been down that road yet. I only hope i can get through it with the strength and understanding that you did.... thanks for sharing
Comment by Reg The Fronkey Farmer on December 31, 2010 at 3:22pm
By saying that they are already in heaven are they not ignoring the Day of Judgement ? That is when god decides who goes up or down - or so I had thought. If they believe that person is in heaven then surely they should be in party mode. I mean he /she has just got eternal life with Jesus because they have died.
Comment by M on December 31, 2010 at 5:04pm
I'm so sorry about the loss of your grandmother.  My hubby's best buddy died this past March and it was a big Catholic affair, as well.  I found all the rosary chanting very soothing, but I agree that the rest of the service was ridiculous.  I did no kneeling and participated in no praying.  I just missed our friend a great deal.
Comment by Toby Cooper on December 31, 2010 at 7:24pm
I'm very sorry about your grandmother. There are very few Catholics where I live. Fundamentalism is the majority view here. What that means is that nearly every funeral is a sermon followed by the pastor taking advantage of everyone's grief by persuading them to get "right with God." This comes usually after a heartwarming story of how the deceased spoke to the pastor recently and had set things right with God themselves. Religion is so deeply felt here that any objection to such emotional blackmail is equated by loved ones as disrespecting the deceased. Needless to say no one ever protests.
Comment by Dustin on December 31, 2010 at 11:15pm

Anyone who says a person dies and immediately goes to heaven is an idiot who obviously hasn't read the New Testament.  


When anyone tries to pull that idiotic theological stunt - I ask them a simple question.  


"In heaven , is there free will?"  


Atheists:  1      Theists:  0 


Isn't it enough to know your Grandmother lived a long life - and is not peacefully in the ground - soon to fertilize the Earth?  


If I was at that funeral, I would have said something.  I truly would have.  I would have caused a riot.  


Thank Goodness my family is mostly secular and I won't have to put up with that nonsense.  

Comment by Doug Reardon on December 31, 2010 at 11:56pm
My favorite uncle died many years ago.  He was not a god fearing man.  I never saw him pray, he never went to church, never even mentioned god as far as i knew.  But, his brother-in-law, also my uncle was somehow put in charge of funeral arrangements.  He arranged a religious ceremony where the minister used my uncle as an example for those who were not believers, because he was now being tormented for eternity in hell!  I was so mad, so dumbfounded, so incredulous that I almost exploded and got up and left the service.  I immediately made arrangements to be cremated before any of my relations could perform such a horrendous act at my death.
Comment by douglas carson on January 1, 2011 at 6:09am
At a relative's funeral the preacher described "how the gates of Heaven swung open wide" for my uncle. As a teenager, I asked the preacher if he really believed that, and got an affirmative answer.  Then I asked him about the "Last trumpet, and the judgement before Heaven, and he said he believed that, too. I told him it couldn't happen both ways and "That was the end of my religion period" {Little Big Man]
Comment by Andrea on January 1, 2011 at 9:19am

@Gaytor - True 'dat. That's one of my main beefs with how Christians deal with death. When I was 14 or 15, my 1 year old cousin died. After her funeral, at her burial, I tearfully hugged my uncle (her father) and he told me, "She's in heaven buying shoes with Jerry (his brother/my uncle who died in a car accident when he was 16 or 17)." So, not only did this event shake my faith in a god, it also made me realize the ridiculous sh*t these people believe. 


They'll eat up the comforting lies from their pastor, even if it contradicts what the Bible says, and goes against all common sense. 


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